It’s the instant connection the first time you meet. Then there’s the butterflies before the second and third meetings. And over time, you start to learn more and more about one another, until you can’t imagine your life without… this home, absolutely Aubergine.

That’s the residential love story of the Crowe family and Aubergine. We recently spoke with Erica Crowe and learned all about what it was like for her and her family to fall in love with their new home.


Erica and Jeff Crowe started their home shopping adventure while they were living in a small starter home in Ladera Ranch. For the Crowes, moving to Ladera was an important first step for their family. However, as Erica explains it, the small home simply represented the beginning of their journey.

“We knew moving into our home at Ladera was a first step, but we knew we weren’t going to stay there forever,” said Erica. “The feeling of being ‘compartmentalized’ was a feeling we couldn’t get past. We dreamed of open floor plans, big backyards and a home that really spoke to us!”

The Crowes decided to look for a new home where their daughter Alisa, 6, and their son Brody, 2, would build fond childhood memories and friendships to last a lifetime.

Alisa and Brody are pretty happy about their new home at Aubergine too!


While the Crowes were busy looking online and going back and forth between purchasing a new home versus an older resale home, they discovered the new community of Esencia at Rancho Mission Viejo. The photos and videos of what life was like on The Ranch made them realize that a whole new world was available to them just down the street from their current home.

“The very first neighborhood we toured at Esencia was Aubergine by TRI Pointe Homes,” said Erica. “Upon walking in, we were immediately blown away. Neither of us ever expected the attention to detail, and we started pointing out features we loved one by one. We were absolutely captivated. It was love at first sight!”


TRI Pointe Homes’ floor plans certainly made an unforgettable first impression on the Crowes, since the first neighborhood they toured was also where they ultimately purchased their dream home. One of the biggest selling points for the family was Aubergine’s harmonious floor plan that seemed tailor-made for their busy family.

TRI Pointe’s thoughtful design cleverly balances grand social spaces with peaceful and private inner sanctuaries. The Crowe’s home is about 3,700 square feet, 4 bedrooms and 5.5 baths. Inspired by the rural sophistication of wine country, the state-of-the-art kitchen, luxurious courtyard and private casita combine to establish a seamless design: a key point of emphasis for the Crowes.

“In our previous home, my husband’s workspace was right in the middle of everything, and it was impossible for him to get anything done with the children around,” said Erica. “Now he can escape to the private Casita and separate himself, which makes it better for everyone. And, when he is finished working, family time is just steps away. There is a balance here, and everyone is much happier.”

Beyond their home’s design, the Crowes were pleasantly surprised to learn about all of TRI Pointe’s LivingSmart® energy-saving features. Aubergine’s available solar energy system also proved a welcome addition for Erica, “Bonus features like that are really nice!”


“One of the biggest benefits in buying our TRI Pointe home was the ability to choose our own designs. Personalization is a huge deal for us,” explained Erica. “You don’t have to go into a house and think, ‘Oh I don’t like that, I need to rip it up and redo it.’ With Aubergine, every element of the design was exactly what we wanted from the very beginning.”

Buying a new home versus a pre-owned home is unlike any other home buying experience. And to the Crowe’s delight, TRI Pointe’s designers assisted the family in every design decision along the way.

“Our designer, Michelle, was wonderful, and helped us greatly when it came to making the home look spectacular. If it wasn’t for her, we wouldn’t have known where to begin. She was an expert. On top of that, she was very nice and patient with us. Somehow she was able to tie together everything that we liked.”


Many people believe that a beautiful home takes on a life of its own. And for the Crowe family, their Aubergine home quickly became part of the family.

“Since we were involved in every step of the design process, when we moved in we already felt like we had so much of our own personality invested. The sense of being home was immediate from the moment we stepped inside,” explained Erica.

“I sometimes think about if we had decided to buy an older home, and I’m really glad that we didn’t. You never know what you are getting or what the history is. With this home, there are no questions. We were involved from the beginning, and for me, the security of that only helps to solidify my love for this home.”


Priced from the low $1 millions, Aubergine at Esencia presents the finest selection of single-family homes with beautifully appointed included features and elegant upgrades. There are outdoor ranch rooms, interior courtyards, casitas, 3-bay garages, great rooms, bonus rooms, optional decks, and so much more. The 3,097 – 3,765 sq. ft. homes feature Adobe Ranch, Monterey and California Bungalow architectural styles. To view a model home photo gallery and to learn more about the neighborhood, click here.


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